Java programming certificate programs offer experienced programmers more in-depth knowledge of many aspects of Java. Some Associate of Applied Science in Computer Programming programs also offer Java specializations through which students learn many of the same basic and advanced Java topics. Skilled Java professionals can pursue certification.
A high school diploma or GED as well as intermediate to advanced proficiency with computers is often required for certificate programs and associate degree programs. Assessment testing is also done prior to enrollment. Intermediate to advanced proficiency with computers is recommended, as well as programming with procedural and object-oriented languages.
Certificate and Degree Programs in Java Programming
Most certificate programs can be completed in under a year. The curriculum covers basic and advanced features of Java such as application programming, maintenance and debugging; and object-oriented coding. Students who successfully complete certificate programs will have intermediate to advanced Java programming skills.
Most Java programming certificate courses require completion of three or four core classes along with a number of electives. Common courses include:
- Java programming
- Java applications development
- Advanced Java programming
- Internet programming
- Object-oriented design and analysis
Associate of Applied Science in Computer Programming (Java Specialization)
The core curriculum of an associate's degree program in computer programming emphasizes multiple programming languages and standard information technology coursework. Most programs require business classes, such as accounting, finance and business communication. Students must also complete general education requirements and electives.
The coursework focuses primarily on Java programming language and applications; however, students also take basic classes in other programming languages. Typical classes in the curriculum include:
- C++ programming fundamentals
- Java programming fundamentals
- Java programming concepts
- Object-oriented Java programming
- SQL programming
- Web design
Popular Career Options
Computer professionals with knowledge of Java can seek a variety of careers. The following are common career choices for Java programmers.
- Applications programmer
- Software engineer
- Web developer
- Video game programmer
- Java developer
Certification and Continuing Education
Sun Microsystems, the company that actually developed Java, offers three Java certification exams (www.sun.com). Graduates of a Java certificate program can demonstrate their knowledge by taking the intermediate-level Sun Certified Java Programmer (SCJP) certification exam. Programmers with SCJP certification can take the advanced-level Sun Certified Java Developer (SCJD) certification exam.
Career Outlook and Salary Info
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics expects employment opportunities for computer programmers to decrease by 8% between 2014 and 2024 (www.bls.gov). This increase is due to the amount of computer systems that are being built into electronics equipment and other non-computer products. Job opportunities are best for highly educated programmers who are skilled in multiple programming languages or who specialize in object-oriented languages. The BLS reported that the average salary for computer programmers was $84,360 as of May 2015.
Java programmers with associate's degrees who want to continue their education can pursue a bachelor's degree in computer programming or a related field. Bachelor's degree programs in computer programming offer some Java programming classes, but they are similar to classes already offered in certificate and associate's degree programs. The curriculum focuses on educating students in many programming languages and applications.
Students interested in Java programming can find certificate and associate degrees going over topics such as web design, internet programming, Java applications development, and more. These programs can lead to various computer-related careers in applications, software, and other fields of programming.